Anatomy of the Ship series

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The Anatomy of the Ship series of books are comprehensive treatments of the design and construction of individual ships. They have been published by Conway Maritime Press (now Conway Publishing) since the 1980s, and republished in the US by the Naval Institute Press.

About the series[edit]

Each volume begins with a general history of the vessel, as preface to a set of detailed scale drawings showing every part of the interior and exterior, from keel to masthead. Black-and-white photographs and engravings, including of ship models for older types, round out the description. Since 1998, each volume has carried a large-scale plan on the reverse of the fold-off dust jacket.

According to its producers, the series ‘aims to provide the finest documentation of individual ships and ship types ever published. What makes the series unique is a complete set of superbly executed line drawings, both the conventional type of plan as well as explanatory views, with fully descriptive keys. These are supported by technical details and a record of the ship’s service.’[1]

The ships chosen are a mix of famous vessels, such as HMS Victory and Yamato, and less-famous ships that are well-documented representatives of their class (HMS Bellona, Lawhill).


The series is divided into two distinct – yet broadly encompassing – categories, identified by colour coding. Firstly, those presented in a yellow-and-silver themed dust jacket relate to ‘non-motor-propelled’ ships. This group tracks the development of ship design from The Ships of Christopher Columbus, through to the end of the age of sail (those designed or constructed approximately up until the 1860s), such as the HMS Beagle: Survey Ship Extraordinaire, 1820–70, by Karl Heinz Marquardt.

Ships thereafter, powered by steam and screw propulsion, are represented in silver-and-blue themed dust jackets. These include submarines, the Japanese World War II vessel, The Battleship Yamato, by Janusz Skulski, and The Aircraft Carrier Victorious, by Ross Watton.


Title Author Year ISBN
The Flower Class Corvette Agassiz John McKay and John Harland 1993 ISBN 0-85177-975-1
The Naval Cutter Alert, 1777 Peter Goodwin 2003 (Revised ed. 2004) ISBN 0-85177-968-9
The Submarine Alliance John Lambert, David Hill 1986 ISBN 0-85177-380-X
The Cruiser Bartolomeo Colleoni Franco Gay, Gay Valerio 1987 ISBN 0-85177-453-9
HMS Beagle Survey Ship Extraordinary, 1820–1870 Karl Heinz Marquardt 1997 ISBN 0-85177-703-1
The Cruiser Belfast Ross Watton 1985 (Reprinted 2003) ISBN 0-85177-956-5
The 74-Gun Ship Bellona Brian Lavery 1985 (Reprinted 2003) ISBN 0-85177-368-0
The Schooner Bertha L. Downs Basil Greenhill, Sam Manning 1995 ISBN 0-85177-615-9
The 20-Gun Ship Blandford Peter Goodwin 1988 ISBN 0-85177-469-5
The Armed Transport Bounty John McKay 1989 (Reprinted 2001) ISBN 0-85177-502-0
The Destroyer Campbeltown Al Ross 1990 (Reprinted 2004) ISBN 0-85177-997-2
The Royal Yacht Caroline, 1749 Sergio Bellabarba, Giorgio Osculati 1989 ISBN 0-85177-496-2
The Ships of Christopher Columbus (Niña, Pinta, Santa María) Xavier Pastor 1992 ISBN 1-84486-014-0
The Frigate Diana David White 1987 ISBN 0-85177-356-7
The Battleship Dreadnought John Roberts 1992 (Reprinted 2001) ISBN 0-85177-895-X
Captain Cook's Endeavour Karl Heinz Marquardt 1995 (Revised ed. 2003) ISBN 0-85177-896-8
The Destroyer Escort England Al Ross 1985 ISBN 0-85177-325-7
The 32-Gun Frigate Essex Portia Takakjian 2005 ISBN 0-85177-541-1
The Fairmile D Motor Torpedo Boat John Lambert 1985 (Revised ed. 2005) ISBN 1-84486-006-X
The Battleship Fusō Janusz Skulski 1998 ISBN 0-85177-665-5
The Escort Carrier Gambier Bay Al Ross 1993 ISBN 1-55750-235-8
The Bomb Vessel Granado, 1742 Peter Goodwin 1989 ISBN 0-85177-522-5
The Battlecruiser Hood John Roberts 1982 (Reprinted 1989, 2001) ISBN 0-85177-900-X
The Aircraft Carrier Intrepid John Roberts 1982 ISBN 0-85177-966-2
The Four Masted Barque Lawhill Kenneth Edwards, Roderick Anderson, Richard Cookson 1996 ISBN 0-85177-676-0
The 24-Gun Frigate Pandora, 1779 John McKay & Ron Coleman 2003 (Revised ed.) ISBN 0-85177-894-1
The Liner Queen Mary Ross Watton 1989 ISBN 0-85177-529-2
The Destroyer The Sullivans Al Ross 1988 ISBN 0-85177-476-8
The Susan Constant, 1607 Brian Lavery 1989 ISBN 0-87021-583-3
The Heavy Cruiser Takao Janusz Skulski 1994 (Reprinted 2004) ISBN 0-85177-628-0
The Type VII U-boat David Westwood 1984 (Reprinted 1986) ISBN 0-85177-314-1
The Type XXI U-boat Fritz Kohl, Eberhard Rossler 2002 ISBN 0-85177-922-0
The Aircraft Carrier Victorious Ross Watton 1991 (Reprinted 2004) ISBN 0-85177-996-4
The 100-Gun Ship Victory John McKay 1987 (Reprinted 1995) ISBN 0-85177-798-8
The Battleship Warspite Ross Watton 1986 (Reprinted 2004) ISBN 0-85177-921-2
The Battleship Yamato Janusz Skulski 1988 ISBN 0-85177-490-3
The 44-Gun Frigate USS Constitution Karl Heinz Marquardt 2005 ISBN 1-84486-010-8
The Battleship Bismarck Jack Brower 2005 ISBN 0-85177-982-4
The Athenian Trireme Doug McElvogue (not published) ISBN 1-84486-025-6
The Mary Rose Doug McElvogue (not published) ISBN 1-84486-038-8


  1. ^ Anatomy of the Ship, Conway Publishing